Kagiso Lesego Molope gives her remarks on Gaza

Kagiso Lesego Molope thrown out of Canadian gala over Palestine

Kagiso Lesego Molope was thrown out of the Politics and the Pen Writers’ Trust Gala in Ottawa, Canada over her remarks on the Palestine genocide on May 7, 2024.

Kagiso Lesego Molope is not a new name for anyone who follows the African literary space. The South African currently based in Canada is the author of Dancing in the Dust (2002), The Mending Season (2005), This Book Betrays My Brother (2018), Such a Lonely Lovely Road (2018), and Maya Angelou: Black Woman Rising, Play. (2019-2023). Some of her accolades include the Ottawa Book Award, the Percy FitzPatrick Prize for Youth Literature, and the Pius Adesanmi Memorial Award.

The South African attended the Politics and the Pen Gala, a fundraiser celebrating Canadian political and literary cultures bringing together national politicians, talented writers, prominent diplomats, and notable arts and business leaders. The event is the backdrop for the annual presentation of the $25,000 Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing. While at the event, she took to the podium to speak on the ongoing genocide of Palestinians in Gaza by the Israeli regime.

“About what power looks like in our daily work and most importantly what our power means for our friends and colleagues, writers like us and journalists risking their lives and fighting on the frontlines of this war,” she said on stage. “A time is coming when the world will start to apologise about what is happening. When that time comes, we will be asked what did you do with your power?”

“My words were met with a lot of heckling and swearing. Afterwards, I went to take my seat thinking “well, at least now we’re talking openly.” I expected to sit down to a lively conversation at the table about the death toll I had just quoted or the rates of malnutrition. My biggest worry was that someone would come at me about being off with the numbers!,” said the South African in an essay afterward.

It has been reported that a call to “free the hostages” alongside a chant of “Nazi go home!” as she finished her remarks. On taking her seat, she was ordered to leave by security the event security.

Here she speaks to journalist Stuart Benson after being ejected from the event;

Palestine For Palestine tweeted after the event, “Publishers for Palestine stands in solidarity with writer Kagiso Lesego Molope, who courageously spoke the truth in the face of genocide-supporting silence at the recent The Politics and the Pen Gala and was then thrown out of the event.”



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3 responses to “Kagiso Lesego Molope thrown out of Canadian gala over Palestine”

  1. Donna Albanese avatar
    Donna Albanese

    God bless this lady kagiso lesego for standing for palestinian lives. I dont know her and I see she is a real human being with a heart beating with love. She was in a room full of soulless creeps. Im sorry she was treated so badly and she can keep her head high. History is on her/our side. Many thanks

  2. Allan Kolski Horwitz avatar

    All power to Kagiso for talking about the genocide in Gaza. Zionism will not be able to whitewash this crime and it will haunt the Jewish people for generations. South African writers in particular must rally round her and make known her stand to buttress our own campaign against Israeli impunity. Viva, Lesego, viva!

  3. Hcw Wait avatar
    Hcw Wait

    Hats of to her for btavery, courage and taking a stand on principles and values.
    Well done Madam; we are proud of you

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